What is the role of hyperbaric oxygen for the treatment of sudden hearing loss?

Updated: Aug 28, 2019
  • Author: Neeraj N Mathur, MBBS, MS, DNB(ENT), MNAMS, FAMS; Chief Editor: Arlen D Meyers, MD, MBA  more...
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Presumably by increasing oxygen tension, hyperbaric oxygen has been evaluated as therapy for sudden hearing loss. The reported series are small, but the topic has been reviewed by Lamm et al in 1998. [25]

A study by Narozny (2004) concluded that hyperbaric oxygen therapy (consisting of exposure to 100% oxygen at a pressure of 250 kPa for a total of 60 minutes) in a multi-place hyperbaric chamber with high doses of glucocorticoids improves the results of conventional sudden sensorineural hearing loss treatment; the best results are achieved if the treatment is started as early as possible. [26]

Some other authors also believe that for people with early presentation of idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss, the application of hyperbaric oxygen therapy can significantly improve hearing loss. However, a beneficial effect of hyperbaric oxygen therapy on chronic presentation of idiopathic sensorineural hearing loss and/or tinnitus is not evident. [27]

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